Health & Wellness

Immunotherapy Clinical Trial at Overlook Medical Center Reveals Brain Tumor Shrinkage, Continues with Phase 3 Study

d66295c6fd3c1e5561ae_98b9f3d91c4480a53289_Dr_Yaron_Moshel_in_OR_1976master_2017.jpg
Yaron Moshel, MD, PhD, is a neurosurgeon with Atlantic Neurosurgical Specialists and co-director of the Gerald J. Glasser Brain Tumor Center at Overlook Medical Center. Credits: Atlantic Health System
d66295c6fd3c1e5561ae_98b9f3d91c4480a53289_Dr_Yaron_Moshel_in_OR_1976master_2017.jpg

SUMMIT, NJ —  Following successful Phase 1 clinical trials, the Toca regimen – a new immunotherapy for patients with recurrent brain cancer – has advanced to a Phase 3 study, which is currently underway. The trial is being conducted at 68 sites across the United States, Canada, Israel and South Korea, including at Overlook Medical Center’s Gerald J. Glasser Brain Tumor Center, one of three clinical trial sites in New Jersey.

In this surgical study, patients are randomized to either standard of care treatment or the Toca regimen. Enrollment is expected to complete in this trial by the end of 2018.

“Toca 5 uses a virus to stimulate a patient’s own immune system and attack recurring high-grade gliomas – glioblastoma and anaplastic astrocytoma,” explains Yaron Moshel, MD, PhD, a neurosurgeon with Atlantic Neurosurgical Specialists and co-director of the Gerald J. Glasser Brain Tumor Center who is Principal Investigator (PI) for the local arm of the study at Overlook Medical Center. 

Sign Up for E-News

Patients randomized to the Toca regimen receive an investigational treatment that involves two discrete steps. During the first step, patients receive Toca 511 (vocimagene amiretrorepvec), a replicating virus that selectively infects cancer cells, at the time of surgery. After a few weeks, they then take cycles of Toca FC (extended-release 5-fluorocytosine), a potent anti-cancer pill that kills cancerous cells and activates immune cells selectively against cancerous ones, leaving healthy cells unharmed. 

“Data from Phase 1 testing of the Toca regimen showed a favorable safety profile, complete tumor shrinkage, and extended patient longevity compared to other therapies,” Dr. Moshel continues.

With the current standard of care, newly diagnosed patients with glioblastomas have a median survival of approximately 14 to 16 months. After recurrence, median survival is typically seven to nine months.

“In contrast, Phase 1 results of the immunotherapy trial showed median longevity of 14.4 months for patients with recurrent disease and patients with complete tumor shrinkage are still alive almost three years after starting the Toca regimen,” adds Dr. Moshel. “These results are encouraging – for patients, their loved ones and the medical community – and we look forward to sharing further findings from Phase 3 within the next 18 months.

Specialists at the Gerald J. Glasser Brain Tumor Center treat a variety of brain tumors and related conditions, including acoustic neuromas and schwannomas; anaplastic astrocytomas, oligodendrogliomas and low-grade gliomas; brain, epidural and leptomeningeal metastases; ependymomas; glioblastomas; low-grade astrocytomas; lymphomas; meningiomas; medulloblastomas; peripheral nerve, pineal and pituitary tumors; rare glial and neuronal tumors; sarcomas; and spinal cord tumors.

The center features a multidisciplinary panel of experts who specialize in neurosurgery, skull base surgery, neuroradiology, radiation oncology, neuro-oncology, medical oncology, neurology, neuropathology and social work. Overlook Medical Center also has the largest CyberKnife program in the tri-state area for the treatment of brain tumors. The brain tumor center recently moved into its own space on the main level of Overlook Medical Center, in order to foster an optimal, convenient patient-centered experience.

For more information, visit research.atlantichealth.org/Toca511, or contact Patrice Light, research nurse coordinator, Gerald J. Glasser Brain Tumor Center, at 908-522-5768.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

Plainfield Woman Admits to Animal Cruelty    

June 23, 2018

PLAINFIELD, NJ — A Plainfield resident has admitted responsibility for neglect that resulted in the deaths of multiple puppies, according to both the Union County Prosecutor’s Office and the New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA).

Suzie Bourdouvales, 38, pleaded guilty to two counts of third-degree animal cruelty earlier this week before state Superior ...

Synopsis of Westfield Board of Education Meeting on June 19

June 22, 2018

I opened the Board meeting on a somber note, announcing the death of sophomore student Carthoris ‘Carter’ Uziel.  Words cannot convey the grief we feel in the Westfield Public Schools community over his death.  We extend our condolences to the Uziel family.  I noted that school counselors are available for all students or staff who may wish to discuss their feelings ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_ba23f8d0d41677854e89_spb-4937_newsletter_june_26

Tue, June 26, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...

Sports

Carousel_image_5b249c4a7e6808d9d7bb_spb-4937_newsletter_june_27

Wed, June 27, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...

Sports

Carousel_image_295f5001319d0d50ecf4_spb-4937_newsletter_june_28

Thu, June 28, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...

Sports

Westfield Police Blotter: Criminal Mischief to Vehicles Continues & More

June 20, 2018

June 13, 2018 9:24 a.m.

Officer Santangelo arrested Hakan Kaya, age 46, of Westfield, New Jersey on an outstanding warrant (#E19490) in the amount of $304.00 out of Neptune City Municipal Court pursuant to turning himself in at WPD Headquarters. Subject was processed and released after posting the full bail amount.

 

June 13, 2018 11:02 a.m.

Lieutenant McFarlean and Officer ...

Wardlaw+Hartridge Class of 2018 Graduates at Commencement

June 24, 2018

Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison held its 135th Commencement Ceremony on Friday, June 8 under a giant tent on the back athletic fields.

The Class of 2018 marched in, led by valedictorian and class president Suraj Chandran of Edison and vice president Cathy Bi of Edison carrying the class flag. The program began with the Star-Spangled Banner and a welcome from Dr. Bob Bowman of Scotch Plains, ...

AtlantiCast

AtlantiCast Episode 17

On this week’s AtlantiCast, it’s National Men’s Health Month, so check out important health tips for you or the men in your life, learn about groundbreaking research into breast cancer treatment that could mean an end to chemotherapy for some patients, meet a local sports hero who’s living his baseball dreams thanks to Goryeb Children’s Hospital and much ...

'Half Time' delivers with sterling cast

MILLBURN, NJ – The Paper Mill Playhouse is putting on a smashing new production of “Half Time” to round out its current season.

With actress Georgia Engel in an engaging performance, the cast also features Donna McKehnie, Andre De Shieilds and Lilias White, among a host of other talents.

The musical centers on an effort to have seniors perform a dance number during ...

Let's Talk About Suicide

In our world today, it seems our children, no matter the town, state, education, family unit, socioeconomic background, ethnicity or religion are grappling with complex, confounding and complicated issues not even fit for a middle-aged adult. Sadly, one of these issues is suicide. With mental health gaining more attention, the stigma appears to be dissipating but when a mental health ...

Cool Ways to Save Money This Summer

As the summer temperatures rise, home cooling costs rise as well. But there are ways to help save money without sweating the heat:

To increase your cooling system’s efficiency by as much as 20%, get it checked out for summer.  A technician will clean the condenser, make sure you have the optimal amount of refrigerant, and ensure the airflow over the coil is ...

Understand the New Law for Paid Sick Leave

Paid sick leave is now the law in New Jersey.

New Jersey has passed a paid sick leave law which preempts paid sick leave ordinances adopted by several cities and towns so there is now one uniform law in this area for New Jersey employers. Here is what you need to know about the new law.

33 Homes Sold June 10 to June 17 in Westfield, Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Mountainside & Cranford

Thirty-three Homes sold from June 10 to June 17, 2018, in Westfield, Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Cranford and Mountainside.*

 

TOWN         ADDRESS                      STYLE    ...

Westfield 3rd Graders Receive Top Honors at Mock Trial Competition

Westfield third graders recently received top honors for three mock court cases they presented at the New Jersey Bar Foundation Law Fair.

“I am proud that, out of 84 entries submitted, our third grade students (now fourth graders) in the Gifted Program have won 1st Place, 2nd Place and Honorable Mention in the 3rd Grade category [of the Law Fair ...

Maximizing Your Portfolio’s Returns -- Beware the Taxman

The old adage in the investment world is that it is not what you make, but what you keep that counts.  Investors often overlook the ultimate deflator of portfolio returns – the taxman. An astute global asset allocation should be the number one priority for investors.  However, there are preferred ways to distribute this asset allocation over the spectrum of taxable and ...

Greatness

In honor of the Lubavitcher Rebbe's (of righteous memory) 24th  Yahrtzeit (anniversary of his passing) this coming Saturday the 16th.

Excerpts from an address given by Nobel-laureate Elie Wiesel on April 7, 1992, at a congressional dinner held in Washington on the occasion of the Rebbe's 90th birthday.

Some of you are aware of my admiration, not only ...

Healthy U Spring Symposium Marks 10 Years of Community Impact

WESTFIELD, NJ — More than 100 Healthy U champions and partners from YMCAs and schools from all over the state gathered at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford on May 18 to celebrate 10 years of community impact. Healthy U was also formally presented with the 2017 CATCH® Award for Excellence in State Health. 

CATCH (Coordinated Approach to Child Health) is the ...

Bridgewater Mall Shut Down for 2 Hours After Fight Breaks Out

June 14, 2018

BRIDGEWATER, NJ — No injuries have been reported after a fight involving a crowd of people shut down the Bridgewater Commons Mall for two hours Thursday evening.

According to a Nixle alert from the Bridgewater Township Police Department at 9 p.m., the investigation at the mall has been completed, and the mall was resuming normal business operations.

According to Somerset County ...

Obituaries

Eric Lieberman, 47, of Scotch Plains, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly Tuesday, May 22, 2018 ...
Read more